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wEEK IN Review
October 25, 2019

Week in Review

The Effects of Atomic Radiation 

On October 24 Archbishop Bernardito Auza, Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, gave a statement before the Fourth Committee of the Seventy-fourth Session of the United Nations General Assembly on Agenda Item 48, dedicated to "Effects of Atomic Radiation.” The statement was delivered by Monsignor David Charters.

In his statement, Archbishop Auza commended the work of the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation in improving our understanding of nuclear radiation, addressing the medical and environmental impact of radiation exposure and developing safety mechanisms to prevent future nuclear disasters. Pope Francis, who will visit Hiroshima and Nagasaki next month, has encouraged the international community to consider more deeply the devastating human suffering caused by the use of nuclear weapons and ensure that these weapons are never used against humanity again. Archbishop Auza also mentioned the negative consequences of nuclear weapons testing that has resulted in radiation leaks and urged all States that have not already done so to ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty.

His statement can be found here:

 

 

General and Complete Disarmament (Nuclear Weapons) 

On October 22, Archbishop Bernardito Auza, Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, gave a statement before the First Committee of the Seventy-fourth Session of the United Nations General Assembly on Agenda Item 98, dedicated to "General and Complete Disarmament (Nuclear Weapons),” and specifically addressed subitems referring to the humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons, ethical imperatives for a nuclear-weapon-free world and the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. The statement was delivered by Monsignor David Charters.

In his statement, Archbishop Auza said that the greatest threats today remain nuclear weapons. Treaties are being flouted, arms control being weakened, and technological innovations making nuclear weapons more potent are being made. We are increasingly aware of the humanitarian and environmental consequences posed by the use of nuclear weapons, he said, and greater attention must be given to the suffering such weapons cause. Member States should spare no effort toward nuclear disarmament and elimination, he urged. Archbishop Auza mentioned the history of the Holy See in efforts to achieve disarmament and said that today we might fight against the "trust deficits" that characterize the current situation of disarmament. He said that the upcoming 2020 NPT Review Conference is a means to strengthen dialogue and move toward ensuring collective security and peace.

His statement can be found here:

 

 

General and Complete Disarmament
(illicit trade in small arms and light weapons)

On October 25 Archbishop Bernardito Auza, Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, gave a statement before the First Committee of the Seventy-fourth Session of the United Nations General Assembly on Agenda Item 48, dedicated to "General Disarmament.” He specifically addressed the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons and the need to assist States to curb the illicit traffic in small arms and light weapons and collecting. The statement was delivered by Monsignor David Charters.

Archbishop Auza welcomed the progress made by the United Nations Program of Action to Reduce, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons and to enhance international cooperation, respect for life and for the dignity of the human person through the promotion of a culture of peace. The illicit trade in small arms can only be fought through international cooperation, he said. Young people today, in many countries, are vulnerable to recruitment by armed groups and, as a result of conflict and war, are exposed to perpetuating cycles of violence. For that reason, opportunity for education is essential. He condemned those who accumulate wealth through trafficking in arms, saying innocent people, sadly, pay the price. The lack of control of the movement of weapons feeds into other harmful activities linked to trafficking in arms, particularly, the illicit trade in drugs and other forms of organized crime. He called for continued resolve to fight against the trade in small arms and light arms and urged all States to participate in the Seventh Biennial Meeting of States to be held next June.

His statement can be found here:

 

 

Celebrating United Nations Day October 24

Members of the Holy See's delegation enjoyed a concert celebrating United Nations Day on October 24 in the General Assembly Hall. The UN Day concert, held each year on the anniversary of the founding of the United Nations in 1945, featured Dana Al Fardan, Hala Al-Emadi and Aisha as well as the Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Eímear Noone. UN Day is, in the words of Secretary-General António Guterres, “an opportunity to remind ourselves, through music and art, of our shared humanity and the values we hold in common." 
 

The Secretary General reminded delegates of the United Nations’ 75th anniversary next year, saying that during the Jubilee, “We will be holding a global dialogue about the United Nations of the future, aiming to stimulate discussion from classrooms to boardrooms,” he said. "I urge all of you to contribute. Today and every day, let’s celebrate our United Nations and work together to realize our shared vision of peace, sustainable development, and human rights and dignity for all on a healthy planet.” 

 

Interest in the Mission’s work

Earlier this week, the Mission welcomed 42 Sisters from Assumption College in Morristown, NJ, who wanted to know far more about the work of the Holy See in multilateral diplomacy at the United Nations before heading to the United Nations for a tour. In the photo Fr. Roger Landry of the Mission is explaining the history of the Holy See at the United Nations as well as priority themes for the Mission today.